I think I’m an environmentalist, or am I? My opinion is that much of the quality life we enjoy is engendered by environmentalist ideals such as clean water and good air. But then, we can also blame environmentalism on things such as localized crowding due to limited backcountry access, as well as the disaster our forests have become. Thus, it was with mixed emotions I noticed that the villain in the latest James Bond film is an “environmentalist.”
Actually, the Bond baddie is just a revert posing as an enviro, but in doing so makes a point. Not everything that looks “environmentally correct” on the surface is actually wise or beneficial.
Along the lines of enviro stuff, have you heard about the fuel cell powered and silent snowmobile? Neither have I. But what if? I’m heading over to the Winter Wildlands Conference this weekend, and much of the energy there will be on how to deal with those pesky snowmachines (hidden definition of pesky: we hate ’em). Hence, as a thought experiment I’m wondering how the totally quiet snowmobile would fit into the concept of “quiet use,” which is the buzz phrase of the Winter Wildlands Alliance.
It doesn’t take long for the experiment to play out. Once the quiet snowmobile joins in with all other quiet users, then perhaps Winter Wildlands will change their name to the “No Friends on a Powder Day Alliance.” Now that would be some refreshing intellectual honesty, wouldn’t it?
We’ve had a steadily growing mix of people dropping by and contributing guest blogs. All their cool stuff was getting buried, so I’ve spent some time organizing the site based on post authors, including a list of guest bloggers in our categories in right sidebar. Most of the WildSnow voice will continue to be mine, but I think you’ll all enjoy our other backcountry voices.
And our biggest news, pioneer extreme skier Bill Briggs (first descent of Grand Teton) has been inducted into the National Ski Hall of Fame! Congratulations Bill!
The Briggs induction was a long time coming and should have been sooner. But it’s taken a while for our various skiing “Halls” to accommodate how skiing is going back to its roots, becoming more populist and backcountry, with less (and I hope continued less) emphasis on industrial tourism. That’s because many halls of fame induct new members by existing members voting, and most hall of famers are ski industry folks or racers, not ski mountaineers, backcountry skiers and freeskiers. I expect that change to continue, and we’ll do whatever we can to hasten it here at WildSnow.com.
WildSnow.com publisher emeritus and founder Lou (Louis Dawson) has a 50+ years career in climbing, backcountry skiing and ski mountaineering. He was the first person in history to ski down all 54 Colorado 14,000-foot peaks, has authored numerous books about about backcountry skiing, and has skied from the summit of Denali in Alaska, North America’s highest mountain.